To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Science what representations he has received on the giving of increased powers to governors; and if he will make a statement.
My right hon. Friend has received a range of representations about the allocation of functions to school governing bodies under the Education (No. 2) Act 1986 and about the proposals in the Education Reform Bill which would further increase their powers. He believes that these enhanced responsibilities will attract many parents and others in the community who would not previously have considered becoming governors.
To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Science what initiatives he is taking to encourage the training of school governors.
For the last two years, the Government have been supporting the development of suitable training strategies in 10 local education authorities by means of education support grants. My right hon. Friend also announced his intention recently to give grant support to the National Association of Governors and Managers. We are discussing with the education authorities, voluntary bodies and business interests what further steps might usefully be taken at national level, drawing on the findings of a research study into existing training methods and materials, which we commissioned late in 1987.
To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Science what plans he has to give parents the right to elect parent governors to temporary school governing bodies.
I refer my hon. Friend to the reply I gave on 16 February last to my hon. Friend the Member for Amber Valley (Mr. Oppenheim) at column 581.